Heka: Another Word for Magic

In my book “Circle of the Sun: Rites and Celebrations for Egyptian Pagans and Kemetics” by Sharon LaBorde, I came across a concept known as heka which is the Egyptian term for “magic”. Each culture probably has their own version of heka but labeled differently. This especially applies to Wiccans and people following the Craft. However, other Pagans do practice magic outside of these two traditions. For ancient Egyptians it was at common practice and heka was closely tied to spirituality as well as every day life, much like a blend of the two. In any case it can be divided into four types: protection and healing, controlling, execration and divination.

In healing, religion was not seen as separate from medicinal practices. In fact they were often entwined. \

Controlling magic applies to attempts at influencing others. Another type of control were love spells which could be very harmful to the person being lusted after.

Execration spells naturally worked at removing and destroying evil spirits from a victim, but are not quite the same as exorcism. On a large scale such spells were used to try and defeat enemies.

Then, of course, divination was a major part of heka. One way to do this was to use pot shards where scenarios were written on them and then used to discover the God’s desired actions. Another method was dream analysis.

I found this to be very interesting and wanted to share. I guess even I work heka from time to time, though I no longer do love spells. When I was Wiccan (or studying Wicca) I attempted to make a love spell. It worked, but the relationship crumbled into a disastrous mess. I have not attempted one since. But I do practice divination and believe in dream analysis.


About Siofra |Nathifa|

A Druid and a Kemetic Pagan. I have studied Celtic Traditions, European Shamanism, the Fairy Faith, Native American Traditions, Wicca, Witchcraft and have explored New Age beliefs. I guess you could say I'm eclectic, but right now my focus is on Druidry and Kemetic Traditions. I am by no means, an expert in any of these interests. I am also a Bard in training.
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